Gloria Pires

Imagine breaking your toe, and it ends up saving your life – but, before you can celebrate that -  it sets in motion a series of events, that put you out of work, in a wheelchair and dependent on your family and friends.  This is the story of Gloria Pires.

Gloria is one of the most generous, caring people in the world and is now in need of some serious help.  She dedicates many hours each week to Rancho Folclórico, Recordações de Portugal as its President. She has served on the Board of Directors for the past 26 plus years, as a director and then President. She works tirelessly to help her community, whether it be: baking, creating (center pieces) for the Rancho’s events, creating and donating baskets for events, to hours of attending performances and hosting the Board’s bi-weekly meetings.  She does not know the meaning of the word no.  She has always been ready willing and able to help others – it’s her turn to be helped now.

Gloria’s Story –

Back in April, Gloria dropped something on her right foot causing her to break her second toe.  No biggie, right?  Well, not so.  Her toe refused to heal. So finally – she went to the doctor.  Now Gloria never goes to the doctor – She never felt sick or was ever even sick, beyond a small cold, so why go?  Well that broken toe has saved her life! The toe that wouldn’t heal, caused her to discover that she has diabetes, hypertension and high cholesterol. Her sugar was over 400.  If she continued this path she could have suffered many other issues in the near future. 

Unfortunately, she had to have the toe amputated and the healing process is slow and arduous.  She has many lesions, that are not healing including the site of the amputation.  She is unable to bear any weight on her foot and is in a wheelchair.  She must have aids come in to help her bathe, as she cannot get into a shower or tub.  The physical therapist comes 3 times a week, to help her build her strength. She has many doctor appointments.  She is now completely dependent on Aides, Nurses, and Physical Therapists to assist her in her recovery along with her everyday needs. She relies daily on her family and friends to take her to her doctor’s appointments, prepare meals, do her laundry as she is learning how to manage her newly diagnosed illnesses.  She needs medication twice daily and has altered her diet. It’s a complete life change.

She has been out of work since April.  As a hairdresser and housekeeper, there are no disability benefits coming in; NO WORK = NO INCOME.  You can imagine that her savings is depleted and the likelihood of her returning to her profession in the future, or ever is VERY slim.  She has been living just within her means for a very long time.  She was a single mom, who cared for her son.  He has now married, and has a son of his own.  Gloria is also responsible for her 97-year-old mother but is no longer able to care for her and has been forced to place her in a nursing home. Both Gloria and her mom have been displaced from their home as it is not wheelchair accessible. Gloria is living with a friend until she can bear weight on her foot and use her knee scoter to get around. This will take many months. 

Imagine losing your income, your freedom, your independence and being totally at the mercy of someone else’s generosity; devastating to say the least.  Top that off with the prospect of not being able to return to your career and having to face the loss of your home!

Please help.  This is not a temporary need, this will impact the rest of her life.

Thank you.
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Organizer and beneficiary

John M Fontes
Bridgeport, CT
Gloria Pires

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